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Henri IV - An unfinished reign

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Source : ‘Michael Praetorius Terpsichore musarum (1612)’; Ricercar Consort & La Fenice; dir. Philippe Pierlot & Jean Tubéry; Ricercar 139124 (1994).


The courante was certainly the newest and most popular ball dance in the early 17th century, and under the reign of Louis XVI it became the very symbol of the danse noble.
Paradoxically, the description given by Arbeau in 1589 does not correspond to the three-part structure of courantes from the end of the reign of Henri IV. This is no doubt a sign of significant changes in the danse de société at this time, the understanding of which is hampered by a lack of theoretical sources.

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